Jan Svenungsson

"Psycho-Mapping East Berlin", text distributed at Musée de l'histoire contemporaine, Paris 2009-2010

The first image in the series is an exact rendering of an East-German map of Berlin from 1989, which describes the main trafic arteries of Berlin. I didn’t add anything, nor did I take anything away.

The second image is my handmade copy of the first image, made without any technical tools to help. I tried my very best to make no mistakes, but I am human, not a machine. Using ink and an old fashioned dip pen didn’t make it any easier. Mistakes couldn’t be erased. The third image is a copy of the second, and so on.

The main rule I have for making a  ”Psycho-Mapping” work is that I am never allowed to deliberately change anything in the original, when making each copy. I must always try the best I can to avoid change and make sure things stay the same. As this is never possible, all sorts of small mistakes and deviations tend to accumulate during the process. Together they force the map to develop into a shape which is not under my control.

It seems to me something similar happens also in reality.

Jan Svenungsson